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The Master

HD   R Closed Captioning

Paul Thomas Anderson

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About the Movie

Haunted by his past, WW-II veteran and drifter Freddie Quell crosses paths with a mysterious movement called The Cause, led by Lancaster Dodd, aka The Master, and his wife Peggy. Their twisted relationship is the core of this film which THE NEW YORK TIMES called “a glorious and haunting symphony of color, emotion and sound with camera movements that elicit an involuntary gasp and feats of acting that defy comprehension.” Will Freddie be able to outrun his past? Will The Cause help or hurt him? Can this tortured, violent creature be civilized? Or is man, after all, just a dirty animal? Starring 2012 ACADEMY-AWARD® NOMINEES for Best Actor, Joaquin Phoenix, Best Supporting Actor, Phillip Seymour Hoffman, and Best Supporting Actress, Amy Adams, ROLLING STONE calls THE MASTER “A mind bending cinematic landmark.”

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews


  • Reviews Counted: 228
  • Fresh: 195
  • Rotten: 33
  • Average Rating: 8.1/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Fresh: In the end it may not have the emotional uplift the Academy or a popular mainstream audience craves, but make no mistake, this is an enthralling drama about a peculiarly American restlessness, and the striving for insight and grace. – Tom Charity,, Jan 8, 2013

Fresh: [A] challenging, psychologically fraught drama. – J. R. Jones, Chicago Reader, Jan 8, 2013

Fresh: The Master may go down as one of Paul Thomas Anderson's most compelling works for two simple reasons: Joaquin Phoenix and Philip Seymour Hoffman. – Cary Darling, Dallas Morning News, Sep 22, 2012

Fresh: The least accessible of Anderson's films, and the least enjoyable, but it's intelligent and original enough for him to remain a "must-see" director. – CJ Johnson, ABC Radio (Australia), Dec 4, 2012

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews



You must be wide awake before viewing this film!

it has been known to cause drowsiness and deep sleep in any viewer that shows even the slightest signs of being tired.

This sounds like a joke, it's not.

Unless you're a true PTA film junkie like me.

But for the average joe just looking for a good movie to watch.

May I suggest any of PTA's other movies, if u haven't seen them.

They will be easier to swallow then The Master.

I've watched this 3 times (some might say I'm a glutton for punishment),

It started to grow on me.

That still doesn't mean that it's not my lowest ranked PTA movie.

His worst movie is more interesting than some other directors best

This is a very cerebral movie that never picks up steam.

From the start it goes back and forth with a medium to slow to medium to slow pace until it ends

You have to be in the right mood to watch this


This movie starts nowhere and ends nowhere, with a lot of nowhere in between. While Philip Seymour Hoffman does a dignified job with the little he had to work with, Joaquin Phoenix is gratuitous. Seemed to me that Pheonix just re-cycled a crazy version of Johnny Cash.

J.R. Jones says "[A] challenging, psychologically fraught drama." GIVE ME A BREAK. The challenge was to stay awake. And I was psychologically fraught wondering why I would waste a couple of hours of my short time on this Earth watching such a lousy movie.

The Masterful Misstep

Let me start off by saying- I'm a Paul Thomas Anderson fan. That being said, I think this movie is really a large misstep for the director. I can see what the vision was- it just wasn't developed well enough. Instead, the movie panders, and to be quite honest, I feel like it's a little pretentious as it tries to play itself off as if it had some great mysterious message, which in turn leads to the watcher being left underwhelmed. All of the actors, especially Phoenix, did a fantastic job, but I feel PTA is really at fault here as the story feels very underdeveloped and lackluster. I appreciate the vision, just not the outcome.

The Master
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  • $7.99
  • Genre: Drama
  • Released: 2012

Customer Ratings